ACC and ABC Applaud HHS Plans to Reduce Health Disparities

Contact: Shannon Cline,, 202-375-6658

Washington, DC – The American College of Cardiology (ACC), the Association of Black Cardiologists (ABC), and the Coalition to Reduce Disparities in Cardiovascular Disease Outcomes (credo) applaud the Administration for the release of the action plans: Health and Human Services Action Plan to Reduce Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities and the National Stakeholder Strategy for Achieving Health Equity.
“We applaud the Administration for releasing strategic plans that focus on ending racial and ethnic health disparities, and for recognizing that these differences can be eliminated through a multifaceted approach to improve access and quality of care,” said Jack Lewin, MD, CEO of the ACC. “We look forward to working as part of the National Partnership for Action to promote equitable care and outcomes for all patients, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, and age.”

Reports have shown that significant health disparities due to race, ethnicity, gender, economic status, and health literacy continue to undermine the health outcomes achieved by many individuals. credo was launched two years ago as an initiative of the ACC in order to eliminate these gaps in care and to give health care providers information and tools to equitably treat their diverse patient populations with or at risk of cardiovascular disease.

The ACC and credo are committed to helping the Administration achieve its goal of eliminating health disparities through the implementation of tools such as the ACC’s National Cardiovascular Data Registry (NCDR®), the nation’s premiere recognized source for measuring and quantifying outcomes and identifying gaps in the delivery of quality care; programs such as cultural competency training for health care providers; and the development and dissemination of provider and patient education materials.

"The Association of Black Cardiologists (ABC) also commends this new initiative that focuses on disparities in African Americans and in all racial ethnic groups in the United States,” said Marcus Williams, MD, President of the ABC. “Cardiovascular disease, including coronary heart disease (CHD) and stroke is the leading cause of death. However, black men and women have the highest rates of CHD death, and even more distressingly, disproportionate degrees of premature death before the age of 74 from heart disease and stroke. This high burden of cardiovascular disease in blacks accounts for the largest proportion in decreased longevity between blacks and whites. The ABC is committed to decreasing disparities in cardiovascular care and outcomes by 20 percent by the year 2020, and we consider this new effort to be consistent with our goals for achieving excellence in cardiovascular care and health equity for an increasingly diverse population.”

For more information about credo and to view the white paper published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, visit:


About the American College of Cardiology

The American College of Cardiology is transforming cardiovascular care and improving heart health through continuous quality improvement, patient-centered care, payment innovation and professionalism. The College is a 39,000-member nonprofit medical society comprised of physicians, surgeons, nurses, physician assistants, pharmacists and practice managers, and bestows credentials upon cardiovascular specialists who meet its stringent qualifications. The College is a leader in the formulation of health policy, standards and guidelines, and is a staunch supporter of cardiovascular research. The ACC provides professional education and operates national registries for the measurement and improvement of quality care. More information about the association is available online at


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